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Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2003 Jun;67(6):1206-14.

Autonomic nervous responses according to preference for the odor of jasmine tea.

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  • 1Laboratory of Nutrition Chemistry, Division of Food Science and Biotechnology, Graduate School of Agriculture, Kyoto University, Kitashirakawa Oiwake-cho, Kyoto 606-8502, USA.


The effect of jasmine tea odor on the autonomic nervous system was investigated by a power spectral analysis of the heart rate variability. We assigned eight volunteers to two groups with either a predilection for or antipathy toward the jasmine tea odor. We tested both high- and low-intensity jasmine tea odors. The low-intensity odor was produced by diluting 20-fold the jasmine tea used for the high-intensity odor test. The low-intensity odor produced an increase in parasympathetic nervous activity in both the predilection and antipathy groups. The high-intensity odor produced an increase in parasympathetic nervous activity in the predilection group, but an increase in sympathetic nervous activity in the antipathy group. The odor of Chinese green tea, a basic ingredient of jasmine tea, produced no effects similar to those of the jasmine tea odor. These results suggest that the jasmine tea odor activated the parasympathetic nerve, whereas the higher-intensity odor activated the sympathetic nerve in those subjects who disliked the odor.

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